Schlumberger lays off 1,400 amid surgical cuts to restore profitability in U.S. shale
Schlumberger, the largest oil field services company, said Friday it lost $10.1 billion in 2019, laid off 1,400 workers in the fourth quarter, closed facilities, pulled hydraulic fracturing fleets from the field and plans to sell assets.
Experts say Schlumberger’s showing sets low expectations for other energy companies preparing to report year-end results and signals that they haven’t adapted to oil prices in the range of $50 to $60 a barrel — too low for many to break even.
For the Houston region, which is home to the Paris company’s principal offices, further industry layoffs and spending cuts could put a damper on the local economy. The energy industry’s struggles have already led the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas to dramatically revise the region’s job growth in the second quarter of 2019 from a robust 4 percent to just a half-percent. More downward revisions are likely.
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